Al Avila calls Detroit Tigers a contender; he could not be more wrong

The Detroit Tigers General Manager Al Avila recently commented on the organization being “all-in” as “postseason contenders” in 2020.

The Detroit Tigers are officially gearing up for a 2020 big league season. There is a lot to digest surrounding this new season, and all of the rule changes that will come with it. However, at the minimum, fans can celebrate the return of Major League Baseball.

There are a lot of questions that are going to be answered over the next month. Still, General Manager (GM) Al Avila seemingly feels the organization can compete during the 2020 season. Even in a 60-game season, the Tigers are just not going to be a competitive ballclub.

Almost every organization is going to have some severely tough starts ahead while everyone gets back to baseball, but expecting to compete for a postseason spot is ludicrous.  If Al Avila is genuinely “all-in” in the 2020 season, something is wrong.

The 2020 season is the perfect opportunity for one thing, and that thing is development. The Tigers should use this season as a chance to start working some of their many pitchers into the organization and test them at the major league level.

The 2020 season could be crucial for this Tigers rebuild. There is no point in wasting the season trying to outperform a team like the Minnesota Twins. Yes, the Tigers made some minimal improvements to the roster to be more competitive, but there is no way they will be a postseason contender in 2020.

Even in a 60-game set, there is no reason to try and mess with this rebuild and forced a playoff berth. The organization needs to see this is an opportunity to start testing out the prospects who are deemed ready for the big leagues in a short season with almost no consequences.

There is no excuse for butchering this opportunity, and the hope should be that Avila will see this. Especially after the organization has consistently been focused on the rebuild there is no reason to put a dent in it by trying to go “all-in” during a shortened season.

This 2020 season should be viewed as a try-out for the prospects in the organization who will be able to showcase their stuff. This is a perfect opportunity for players who are in Triple-A, and fringey Double-A guys to show the organization what they have for the future.

Squandering an opportunity to have a pitching staff with Matt Manning, Casey Mize, and Tarik Skubal trying things out in the big leagues is plain insane. These players may not be on the 40-man roster, but with the changing rules to adapt to this 60-game season, the Tigers could work some magic.

Even without any additions to the 40-man roster, Venezuelan youngster Anthony Castro is more than worth giving a shot on a big-league mound in 2020. Beyond Castro, the Tigers could give looks to players like Beau Burrows and Franklin Perez.

There is absolutely no reason to try and compete or go “all-in” on being a postseason contender in 2020, risking a detriment to the ongoing rebuild. If for some forsaken reason the Tigers prospects light it up and the Tigers are competitive, sure.

However, the consensus would be that these pitchers may need a few starts to get their footing and adjust to big-league talent. It may not be the smooth transition, or the Tigers may have three Justin Verlander’s waiting for their chance, one could be incredibly optimistic and hopeful.

Ideally, the Detroit Tigers front office will not mess up this opportunity to help the ongoing rebuild during the 2020 season, but time will tell.

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